Western Caribbean Travel Diary

Last year, Casey and I took our first vacation together; we sailed on the Royal Caribbean Allure of the Seas ship for an Eastern Caribbean cruise to the Bahamas, St. Thomas, and St. Maarten.  It was after that amazing experience that we realized that we both had a true passion for seeing the world, and promised to make it our business to travel together at least once a year.  

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Having said that, we started researching destinations a few months back.  With both of us being in school at the time, our money was pretty tight so we decided to try a cruise again, both of us agreeing that it would be the most affordable and worthwhile trip.  Not to mention, Case and I don't know how to sit still, so we love the idea of hopping around to different locations each day.  We wanted to make our experience very different from the last, so we decided to travel with another cruise line with some extraordinary destinations.  

We sailed on the Norwegian Escape cruise going to Honduras, Belize, Costa Maya, and Cozumel!  We were able to book a balcony room which was amazing. Everything was all-inclusive; we bought the unlimited drink package and an excursion package that gave us a $50 discount on any excursion on the islands that we booked.  

WHAT I PACKED:

 We knew that we wanted to document this trip in-full, so we did tons of research on the places we'd be visiting and made sure to pack the proper equipment.  I brought my Macbook Air, Canon T5i and GoPro Hero 3, and Case rented a Sony RX100V.

If you're anything like me, you'll pack a month's worth of clothes for a week getaway.  I started off by making a packing list (a MUST if you want to ensure organization), and dwindling down from there.  I have to admit, I pranced around in bikinis for the majority of the trip simply because it was so damn hot at each island and while we were at sea, but I did pack some items that I could coordinate for some cute outfits. 

I packed a few pairs of shoes, but these two pairs were in my top rotation.  

 Pool Slides: Urban Outfitters  Sneakers: Nike Cortez 

Pool Slides: Urban Outfitters

Sneakers: Nike Cortez 

I packed all my beauty and cosmetics products in these adorable lightweight travel cases that I received with some purchases I'd made at Glossier, one of my favorite beauty brands. 

 Left: DevaCurl Ultra Moisturizing Milk Conditioner, DevaCurl Coconut Curl Styler, DevaCurl No Poo Ultra Moisturizing Milk Cleanser, Mario Badescu Facial Spray  Right: The Body Shop Tea Tree Oil Face Wash and Moisturizer, Bath and Body Works Beautiful Day Body Lotion and Body Mist

Left: DevaCurl Ultra Moisturizing Milk Conditioner, DevaCurl Coconut Curl Styler, DevaCurl No Poo Ultra Moisturizing Milk Cleanser, Mario Badescu Facial Spray

Right: The Body Shop Tea Tree Oil Face Wash and Moisturizer, Bath and Body Works Beautiful Day Body Lotion and Body Mist

DAY 1: TRAVEL

Our ship was sailing out of Miami, Florida so we booked an early morning flight on the day of our disembarkation.  We flew out of John F. Kennedy airport on an 8:00 AM Delta flight and landed in Miami at 11:30 AM.  We had some time to kill before boarding the ship, so we grabbed a bite to eat before making our way there.  The first day consisted of us exploring our new home for the week as well as getting settled in.  

DAY 2: AT SEA

We spent the entire day at sea while sailing to Honduras, which is way more fun than it sounds. Each day, the cruise line has a list of activities and events starting from 7:00 AM until midnight and on, so there is always something to do.  We chilled and sipped poolside and continued to explore the ship some more.  Later on, we ate dinner at ended up falling asleep early like an old married couple.  I swear, the sun and sea air will really knock you out.  Besides, we were super excited to arrive in Honduras and wanted to get some sleep being that we'd have an early start in the morning.   

Here's what I wore to dinner that evening.  I made sure to pack clothing that was lightweight with detailing that was cohesive with a carefree vacation vibe.  I borrowed the flower print crop top from a friend, my frayed culottes are from last year's Zara Spring/Summer collection, and my mules are from Zara's Spring/Summer 2017 collection. 

DAY 3: ROATAN, HONDURAS

We docked in Roatan, Honduras at 10:00 AM, but we woke up hours before to watch the sun rise from our balcony.  There isn't a feeling that can compare to overlooking beautiful crystal clear waters and fresh greenery right from your room.  

We had time to kill before our private beach excursion at 11:30, so we decided to explore the inland area.  We connected with some friendly locals and got a taste of everyday life in Roatan. 

We spent the rest of the day on a private beach a little ways off from our port where we were served lunch and given time to explore.  One thing I loved most about Honduras was its natural beauty. The nature was so pure and fresh—lush green trees (not just the palm trees), crystal blue waters and soft white sands.  Everything was so well preserved.  

 Bikini top: American Eagle  Sarong: Casey's mom :)  Sunglasses: ASOS

Bikini top: American Eagle

Sarong: Casey's mom :)

Sunglasses: ASOS

DAY 4: HARVEST CAYE, BELIZE 

We arrived to Harvest Caye, Belize at 8:00 AM.  The day started off sunny but unfortunately led to thunderstorms toward the end of our stay.  We spent some time on the beach and actually went on the ship a few hours before we were set to sail out—there wasn't much for us to do being that we couldn't explore inland.  It actually worked out in our favor being that we were back on the ship before the storm hit.  I didn't leave the island without basking in that gorgeous ocean though, the water was extremely warm! 

I got to rock one of my favorite bikinis that I bought from ASOS in Belize.  I fell in love with the high leg bikini bottom trend—it is so flattering and accentuates different body types! 

DAY 5: COSTA MAYA, MEXICO

We arrived to our first of two stops in Mexico—Costa Maya!  Mexico is a BREATHTAKING country. The sun beamed against the glistening deep blue waters, reflecting a shimmering glow that left me speechless.  I could stare at the water for hours—if you haven't already noticed, I'm a major beach bum who has a major obsession with the ocean.  

What I loved most about Mexico besides the scenery was that there was SO much to do.  But, we didn't want to spend our day in the tourist area, so we talked with some people to see what we could explore. (I was able to flex with my mediocre Spanish skills which was super funny). We were able to catch a $3 cab to a nearby beach.  The cab took us through some of the neighborhoods in Costa Maya; the houses were so vibrantly colored with such unique architectural design.  One thing that Casey and I like to do while traveling is embrace the authenticity of a place and experience how people really live rather than stay in the manmade tourist areas.  

 Once we got to the beach, we settled in and were taken care of by some of the locals who worked there.  They hooked us up with some authentic Mexican food, drinks, and $10 kayaks.  We basked in the warm sunlight on this cute hammock we found, and swam in the water—again, unimaginably warm.  We spent the entire day in what I considered a tropical paradise.  The warm sea air was so caressing, the Caribbean sun was strong—so strong that my skin turned about 20 shades darker—and we were just blissfully happy in a carefree state of mind.  

DAY 6: COZUMEL, MEXICO

Our last destination *cries* was Cozumel, Mexico.  This was the most adventurous day for us out of the entire trip.  We went on an excursion we booked for 8:30 AM for a catamaran that took us out to sea to go snorkeling and then to a beach party afterward—can't forget the unlimited margaritas they started serving as soon as we boarded the boat.  We used the GoPro when we went snorkeling and got some awesome footage, which you'll be able to see in the vlog I have coming very soon!  The fish swam right underneath you, so close that they could brush against your legs.  It was an unexplainable experience.  

 The beach party was a blast. There was so much to do with such a short amount of time—we only had an hour and a half on the beach before we had to head back, so we tried to do as much as we could.  There were huge inflatable slides, trampolines and mazes—sort of like what you'd see in the show Wipe Out—sitting in the water that you had to swim up to.  

We played around on those for a bit before paddle boarding.. which ended in a scare.  We had our GoPro with us and we took turns trying to video and photograph each other.  Being that it was our first time on paddle boards, it was hard for us to maneuver and maintain balance.  Our paddle boards floated a distance away from each other and Case had asked me to toss him the GoPro... I think you can guess what happened next.  The GoPro fell directly in front of Case's paddle board and sank to the sea floor—which luckily for us was only about 7 feet beneath us.  I nearly had a panic attack!  Thankfully, one of the helpful lifeguards was able to dive to the bottom and get it for us, and was gracefully rewarded with Case's $20 tip.  That was a bit of a wakeup call for us—yes, its fun to document and save memories, but sometimes its better to just live in the moment!  

Being that I knew I'd be very active in Cozumel, I switched up my bathing suit attire and decided to rock my Superdry swimsuit that I bought through ASOS.  I didn't want any bikini malfunctions while I was adventuring out and about!

The catamaran took us back to the port; being that we had about 5 hours left, we hopped right in a cab that took us to the closest beach to go jet-skiing.  Jet-skiing is such an exhilarating experience; we were slamming those waves and zipping through the waters.  Unfortunately the GoPro died before we were able to capture some footage, but after the mishap from earlier in the morning, we felt better off without it.   I was absolutely exhausted afterward, so I just lounged around on the shoreline for a bit before heading back.  I'm telling you, I can sit right where the sand and ocean touch for HOURS, there's something about it that's so soothing to me.     

You seriously wouldn't believe me if I told you how many people came up to me and said, "Superdry?  Does that mean your bathing suit is waterproof?" ...I wish I was joking.  

I wish I would've bottled up some sand to take home with me.  We enjoyed another scenic cab ride back to the port, and grabbed some food at Margaritaville as soon as we got back on the ship. 

DAY 7: AT SEA

We spent our last full day on the cruise at sea heading back to Miami.  We decided to make it a funfilled and energetic day; we ventured around the ship again, and then headed back to our room around sunset to do something super spontaneous.  

We put our mattress on the balcony—crazy, I know—and just watched the sunset on the horizon.  We even spotted dolphins diving through the waves right outside of our ship. It was an experience that can't be put into perfect words.  I wish I could've stayed in that memory forever.  

DAY 8: EXPLORING MIAMI

We arrived back in Miami at 7:00 AM, but our adventures were far from over.  We disembarked the cruise and headed to the airport.  Our flight wasn't until 3:00 PM, so we decided to check our suitcases in early and explore Miami for a couple of hours.  We caught a $5 Uber to the Wynwood Art District.  

Before heading back to the airport, we went downtown and had lunch at Senor Frogs which I've been dying to go to!  Soon enough, we were on our flight heading back home to New York. 

This vacation was truly indescribable.  I came back home feeling so revitalized, refreshed and renewed.  We explored parts of the world that I never imagined venturing to and we had time to kick back, all while having so much fun and allowing our bond to grow even stronger.  It is so important to have a getaway from your everyday life.  To me, vacation is more than just relaxing—it's a chance to see different parts of the world, to learn more about yourself, to become cultured, and to give yourself a new atmosphere to grow in.  I am so thankful that I was able to experience this journey with someone who shares the same passion to travel and experience life as myself.  

Thanks for reading!  Be sure to stay updated for the full travel vlog that will be coming soon.  I'll be making the annoucement on my Instagram, and the video will be attached at the bottom of of this post as well as on Youtube! 

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